What’s going on in the world today? Every time you turn on the tv, listen to the radio, or check the internet, it’s disaster after disaster. Nation against nation; religion against religion; race against race, democrat against republican, and person against person. Ezekiel 13:10 says, “they lead my people astray, saying, “Peace,” when there is no peace.” It seems like everyone wants peace, but no one has it.
Jesus said, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” John 14:27
The world says peace is the absence of conflict but the peace Jesus gives lives in the hearts of those who love him. How can nations live in peace if the people that make up those nations have no peace? How can races or religions live in peace if the people who make up those races and religions have no peace in their hearts?
The world’s peace is dependent upon feelings - It says if I feel good about myself, I will be at peace. We live in the most self-obsessed society that has ever existed. Let’s call it, the selfie society. We take pictures of ourselves until our arms wears out, then we put our phones on selfie sticks and take more. This avalanche of self-love should mean that we have more than enough peace. Then why is there no peace?
Jesus’s peace is dependent on trust. The bible says, “You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.” Is 26:3. But trust is only as good as its object. If you sit in a chair with a broken leg, you can trust it with all my heart, but you will still end up on the floor.
The world’s peace says you have to be in control of every situation. The world says if you have power and money, you will be in charge. Then, you will have peace. But what happens if you meet someone with more power or money than you? You no longer have control so you no longer have peace.
Jesus’s peace says you don’t have to be in control, because God is in control. James 4:8 says, “Come near to God and he will come near to you.” What could be more peaceful than snuggling up in the arms of the Creator of the Universe.
The world says that peace comes from winning. If someone hits you, hit back harder. Never forgive and never forget. In the movie Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Malcolm (human) warns Caesar(ape) that the apes need to run because the soldiers are coming and war is about to start. Caesar replies that apes already started the war and man would finish it because men never forgive. We don’t need a monkey to tell us that men never forgive. Just look around! How much forgiveness do you see.
Jesus says forgive. In Matthew chapter 18, the bible says, that Peter came to Jesus and asked him, if he must forgive somebody up to 7 times for sinning against him. Jesus answered, “not seven times, but seventy-seven times.” Jesus said that if God forgives us, the least we can do is forgive each other.
The world’s peace says the one who dies with most wins….Stay tuned for part two…..